Noriko Yakushiji was born in Tokyo. She learned violin from an early age, and started taking singing lessons from the age of 16.
After graduating from Tokyo University of the Arts, she studied in Belgium with a grant from the Belgian government. Under the tutelage of Marianne Pousseur, she finished the Master's program of the Royal Conservatory of Brussels with a scholarship from the Nomura Foundation. She finished the advanced master program in contemporary music (Ictus / Spectra academy) of the Royal conservatory of Ghent under the supervision of Filip Rathé.
She was a laureate of the Concours des Nouveaux Talents de l'Art Lyrique in Ans, finalist of the Bel Arte International Vocal Competition, and obtained the 3rd prize in the Contemporary Music Competition “Kyogaku XIII” in Tokyo.
Her opera debut was the lead role in Ravel's "L'enfant et les sortilèges" at the Royal Opera of Liège, in a joint production with the Royal Conservatory of Brussels, directed by Marianne Pousseur. Other opera roles include Virtu in Monteverdi’s “L’incoronazione di Poppea” at the John Mackintosh art center in London, Alto in Matsudaira’s “The provocators” (World premiere) at the Instituto di Cultura in Tokyo, Phaedrus in Satie’s “Socrates”. She also performed at the Japanese premiere of “Rara film” (Japanese premiere) by Sylvano Busotti in Tokyo, among several other concerts around Europe, China and Japan.
Her main interests lie in contemporary music. She performed in such festivals as the Belgian contemporary music festival Ars Musica (Belgium) and the Silga international contemporary music festival in Spain.
Her performance of “The Music of Furniture” by Yuki Nakahashi was aired on NHK-FM in 2019.
Recently, she co-organised and premiered the contemporary chamber opera "Amidst dust and fractured voices" by Koji Takahashi at the Miry Concert Hall in Ghent. This opera also was performed at the "Phaino" festival in Brussels and in Tokyo.
In Ghent and Antwerp, she improvised in "I left the fields alight," an experimental theatrical work that traces the memories of stage director Yannick Verweij.
Her first CD “Mnemosyne” is an anthology of vocalise works of the 20th and 21st centuries, distributed by the label Sheva Collection.